Most of the products and tools I cover these days, I’ll admit, are actually rarely fresh, new, and brilliant ideas. So for a change, here’s something that is. Launched yesterday is WhoToTalkTo, a new job referral exchange system started by Brian McCullough.
Here’s how it works. To sign up, you’re required to have at least one job referral to some place — either by knowing someone who is looking to hire, or if your previous employer needs a replacement. You describe the kind of a job it is without providing any contact details (they’ll be needed later), and you’re let into the system, giving you the ability to look through job referrals that other WhoToTalkTo users have put up.
When your referral lead gets a user, you gain one point. You can now use this point to request leads to the referral of your choice, in which case it costs you and the other member gains it, and so on. You get their contact details, and provide the contact details to the people who’ve follow up to your referral.
As complex as it sounds, it’s quite simple once you get to use it. So far, the whole job referral thing has been purely offline, and WhoToTalkTo really aims to bring this idea online into a much more organized system. To me, this essentially seems like a neat idea, and one that gives the traditional employer-looks-jobseeker-finds model a fair challenge.
The big problem I see here, though, is that there will always be a large amount of people creating fake referrals to get into the system. Since every jobseeker on the market doesn’t have a referral to provide, and let’s face it if you are a jobseeker you will be looking for a job wherever you get the chance too — especially in such an exclusive and (semi)personal system — there will be a large amount of corruptness and false listings in the system. In general, I love the idea though.
[tags]WhoToTalkTo, Jobs 2.0[/tags]